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Friday, May 22, 2009


Steve Cole reports:

I was watching one of those Discovery Channel reality shows about lobster boats off New England. The way they do it is to lay strings of 40 lobster traps, all hooked on one rope. with a float on each end that rides on the surface of the ocean. They had a frequent problem with other ships accidentally dragging their strings miles away or accidentally cutting their floats, causing them to lose equipment and doom the trapped lobsters to death by starvation (as opposed to death by restaurant).

It would seem to me that somebody could solve this problem by inventing something (and make money selling it to lobstermen). That "thing" would be something fastened to the middle of the string with a timer to release a float (with a GPS-based "cell phone") after so many days. You would always know that no matter what happened, you'll find your lost gear on a certain date (when you set the device to release its float).